As good as the system is, it is flawed just as bad. Victims in this system have no rights; on the other hand, criminals have all the rights. A defendant on trial is innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
I just recently served on a petit jury as a juror. The defendant was charged with possession of crack and powered cocaine with intent to distribute. The State had to prove beyond a reasonable doubt just three things: that it was cocaine, it was enough to distribute, and possession of whom it belonged.
To be found guilty or not guilty a vote of 10-2 was needed either way. In this case the vote was 11-1 not guilty. I was convinced that the defendant was guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Everyone else had some doubt because some questions had not even been brought up and we would not be able to get these answers.
Without getting into any specifics of the trial, which would take too much space and time, the defense attorney instructed us that if we could only come up with a verdict of probably guilty, our verdict had to be not guilty by reason of reasonable doubt. This is exactly what happened.
What flawed this trial is that the judge did not allow the crucial evidence to convict this third time felon. If just some of this evidence would have been admissible, or two of the witnesses would have been able to testify to any of their part or what was seen, or even if one of the other witnesses who did testify would have been allowed to tell the truth (yes, I did say to tell the truth) this third time offender on parole or probation would now be serving a 30-year sentence of hard labor. He would be off of our streets.
We spoke with the prosecutors after the trial and were given all of the evidence that the judge would not allow to be given in this trial. Our system has failed us once again. To add insult to injury, just ten days after this third time convicted felon was found not guilty by reasonable doubt, he was once again arrested on drug charges. But this time it was charges of manufacturing crack cocaine and other drugs along with possession of liquid cocaine and other drugs and drug paraphernalia.
And now once again we as taxpayers have to foot the bill for another trial. A trial for someone who should be in prison already. What a waste of money, the jurors’ time and having to miss time from their jobs and with their families. Good job judge!